Q: We have a client we would like to get into affiliate marketing. The client is doing extremely well with PPC, and we’d like to have affiliates promote them, too, but we don’t want the affiliates to interfere with the existing PPC campaigns. How can we do this?
A: This is something you can address pretty easy by working provisions regarding PPC into your affiliate agreement.
In your affiliate agreement, simply detail what affiliates can do with PPC… bid on trademarks, generic terms, or nothing at all.
Typically, I haven’t permitted bidding on brand names for the affiliate programs I’ve managed. However, affiliates could bid on the generic terms.
Also, I would sometimes make exceptions for a couple or three affiliates, when they were willing to create a large campaign with hundreds or thousands of terms to promote the affiliate program.
By letting them bid on the brand name or trademark names in this case, it counter balanced losses they had in experimenting with their extensive list of other keywords.
So just put it into your agreement and make sure your affiliates are aware of these rules.
I would also suggest mentioning in the affiliate agreement that affiliates violating the agreement are subject to forfeiting the commissions.
Expect that some people are going to test whether you are monitoring the bids out there. This is a pretty hands-on process to keep an eye on things, but you’ll need to do it if you don’t want to allow people to jeopardize your client.