by Amy Harrin
Once you launch your affiliate marketing program, the REAL work has begun. There are a multitude of ways to keep your brand top of mind with affiliates and consumers.
Here are some key factors in communicating with your marketing partners/virtual sales force/Affiliates:
- Publicize affiliate program launch in the network and on industry blogs and web sites. ABestWeb.com is a leading source for affiliates and merchants to discuss current events and best practices.
- Create and send monthly or quarterly affiliate newsletter, promotional/holiday sales e-mails.
- Send other communication bulletins needed such as new product launches, site down time warnings.
- Create affiliate incentives/contests as needed to keep partners excited and engaged to keep selling! Try and do contests that affiliates of all levels can win at. I have always loved the old “Increase your sales by xx% over last month and win a $100 Amazon Gift Card.” This is inexpensive, and get’s everyone pumped up about your brand.
- If you are selling a product, know your peak buying times and plan ahead. Give affiliates at least a 2-week notice to place your ads on their web site. Affiliates hate nothing like e-mailing them a day before a holiday!
- If you are doing a paid placement with some of the larger sites, make sure you book ahead. These “super affiliates” have thousands of merchants looking for premium visibility during huge sales peaks like Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Back to School, etc..
Below you will see some examples of affiliate communication, and resulting exposure that was garnered from simply reaching out to publishers. Some placements are negotiated with a private higher payout incentive to the partner, others need to be paid for like an advertising media buy.