Operating a successful affiliate program is a long-term strategy and should have certain procedures in place to grow a large and productive affiliate program. Having the right affiliate managers in place is a must. The question is whether to use internal company staff, hire an experience affiliate manager, or use an outsourced affiliate program management company or OPM. There are various pros and cons to using any of these options. Some companies will use a combination of inhouse people and outsourced management to get the job done. But not all internal affiliate managers and OPM are created equal…and there are many factors to consider.
If you use an internal staff member to manage your affiliates you likely won’t get enough proactivity or coaching going on. Coaching and training is integral to working with your affiliates to get them producing well. If you just rely on your top 5% of affiliates, you will never have a large, productive base of affiliates. When you have a large productive affiliate base you will have a tremendous foundation of traffic and revenue. Affiliate activation rate is also critical to getting the most out of your affiliate program and inexperienced internal staff may not be able to deliver in this regard. Similarly, if you hire the wrong outsourced program management company, you run the risk of having only somewhat experienced and knowledgeable people managing and working with your affiliates. Make sure the OPM company you hire can answer all the hard questions and give you a feeling of confidence that they can take your affiliate program to the next level. Also look at their list of clients and see who you feel has the right mix of programs and quality companies on board as clients. The more quality merchants an OPM has the more likely they are managing 10s of thousands of great affiliates. If they can project a vision for how your program will grow and how long it will take, it will help you feel confident in their abilities.
Outsourcing your affiliate program can be a good idea if you use the right company. There are two activities your affiliate management should be doing at all times: working with your current affiliate base and reaching out to new affiliates to bring them onboard. If both of these tasks aren’t being done simultaneously then you are not truly capitalizing on your affiliate program. Look for a company that is going to be innovative and creative with your affiliates. Running contests and designing compelling creative is a great way to get your affiliates excited about your program. Affiliate management should be extremely proactive in nature, there is no room for slacking or coasting with managing affiliates.
When looking to outsource your affiliate program, you can get a free consultation on you affiliate program needs by contacting us through this website. Now get out there and dominate!