Q: How can affiliate managers build a relationship with affiliates, when it seems like they don’t care? They build dozens of sites and join dozens of programs, giving little attention to your program.
A: I don’t think it’s a matter of them being ambivalent towards your affiliate program in particular. But rather the average affiliate joins so many affiliate programs – more than they will ever have a chance to promote.
They do care about putting up the best offers, they probably just don’t remember that they joined your affiliate program. So it’s your responsisbility to make they want to get active with your program.
What you’ve got to do is formulate an affiliate activation plan. After all, recruiting affiliates into your program is merely step one of the process.
After that, you must also activate and educate affiliates about your company and program. Think about the parallel in the offline world – you wouldn’t have sales people go about selling products for a company without tools and resources, so give your affiliates the same.
It’s not sufficient to just send your new affiliates a welcome e-mail. That note may get grabbed by spam filters or just missed among the volume of clutter they get each day.
Try calling your affiliates as they join or sending them direct mail with more details on your affiliate program. Always provide your name and all of your contact information to make yourself as accessible as possible.
I create a sales guide for affiliates that want to learn more about the affiliate program, company, target audience, etc.
Also, ask your affiliates what they want and need. Perhaps they are not promoting you because you do not offer the type of creative they want to use.