I was recently asked a question on what I considered three top “Best Practices” to follow in managing an affiliate program… so I wanted to share my answers…
What do you consider the top three best practices to be in managing an affiliate program?
2. Knowing where you are going
3. Awareness to technical issues
In more depth… an affiliate manager must be able to listen to criticism and critique. Affiliates in general have seen every issue in the book, and for the most part they have been the loser in this game more often than not. Missed tracking, accidental outages, etc… Be humble and listen to what they tell you.
Secondly, you need to map out a strategy containing the long-term goals of the program. Do you want a program focused on blogs, content, datafeeds, etc… or do you want something more along the lines of branding with certain types of PPC, coupons, loyalty, etc… Without knowing where you are going it will be hard to make the decisions that are necessary in terms of who to partner with.
Lastly, an affiliate manager doesn’t need to know how to code C++ objects, but there is definitely a technical element to the job. Especially in the area of affiliate selection, it is imperative that an AM can understand the technical ramifications of certain affiliate behaviour, and how it might affect other affiliates in their program. Affiliates, in general, are no longer willing to accept the “I didn’t know” defense – but are looking for AMs who can proactively fight the battles that they need fought. Unless an AM understands the issues at hand, it will be difficult to make proper decisions based on their goals.
These are some broad strokes, obiously they can each branch into a dozen other sub-sections, but if you have any questions or anything to add please feel free to comment below….