Like brands use customer e-mails to deliver brand updates and key developments, then we should do the same with affiliate publishers. No partnership will ever be successful if the brand does not communicate.
I keep in touch with my clients core revenue and traffic drivers on an almost daily basis via phone, meetings or e-mail. But, a well executed affiliate program needs to nurture relationships throughout the mix of publishers. This is where a regular affiliate newsletter can help. My personally designed client e-mails replicate those sent to customers in their design. The key goal though, is to effectively communicate the latest news and brand updates on behalf of my clients with an affiliate twist. The publisher receives vital start and end dates for promotions, examples of the latest affiliate banners, and easy to copy affiliate links for best sellers and new releases.
Any successful affiliate program relies on recruitment. It is key when you are launching a new program and want to onboard new publishers. Alternatively you could be looking at ways to deliver incremental growth to a mature program. Either way any account manager needs to have recruitment as a core weekly task for all their programs.
My brand new affiliate outreach program enables me to index a large number of potential partners at scale. Including:
- What affiliate your competitors have
- What publishers are using subnetworks
- Curating the most active affiliates in your region
- Category specific affiliates
Once I have curated this list of potential partners I plug this into my CRM system. All new partners receive personalised e-mails and follow-ups to ensure they are successfully onboarded to the required program.
The outreach program I use helps to deliver new affiliates at scale. My experience though, enables me to know instantly what affiliates to recruit through the network. I have worked on a wide range of programs, differing in sizes. It is this background that means I have a hitlist of partners that are core players in nearly all affiliate programs I have managed.
I have managed affiliate accounts across a number of regions, networks and verticals. Unfortunately, a lot of the time I’ve been let down by the lack of proactive network account management. I believe my clients deserve better and that is why I encourage brands to join a private tracking network (Saas platform).
Here are just a few reasons why I believe this is the right direction
- Lower network fees
- First class tracking
- Innovative payment models
- Sales attribution as standard
Many of the most well-known affiliate networks have been around for at least 15 years. Their tracking and technology is cumbersome and often outdated, prone to crashing. Hence why any network updates take so long to come to fruition.
Saas networks are agile and modern. Updates to improve UI, performance and tracking are rolled out monthly if not weekly.
Networks generally charge high overrides to cover non-existent account management. Account management that is received is often lacking experience and any innovative approach to your program. The same opportunities with the same big partners are rolled out like a conveyor belt.
Where a Saas platform differs is they are built as tracking solution. That is their sole deliverable to a brand, first class tracking. The account management of any affiliate program is covered in-house by the brand or by employing a third party like myself. In a nutshell you have a dedicated specialist account manager driving your program forward. All whilst receiving a lower network fee, and exceptional tracking and payment technology.