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Launching an Affiliate Program? Here's How to Do It

Discussion in 'Affiliate Management and Recruitment' started by Linda Buquet, Sep 8, 2006.

  1. Linda Buquet

    Linda Buquet <span style="color: #daa520;font-weight: bold;">Me

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    Think launching an affiliate program is easy? Think you can just join a network and 'they' will come? I don't do affiliate management myself any more, however since I offer free consultations for merchants, I talk to LOTS of them every week and then refer them out to the affiliate management company that best meets their needs. Many of the merchants that call me about launching a new affiliate program really have no idea what's involved and don't understand why they would need the help of an outsourced affiliate management consultant. Some just think all you have to do is add the tracking pixel to the cart. ;-) They simply don't realize how much there is to do, IF you want to launch a program right!

    I'm so glad I don't manage programs any more, especially after reading the following blog about how much work goes into launching an affiliate program. It really offers some good tips about the steps involved. Reading the following blog prior to launch could help you build a much more solid foundation for your new or re-launch affiliate program. If launching a program yourself sounds too overwhelming, give me a call, I know some great consultants that can help! :)

    Jamie Birch is the Director of Affiliate Relations for Converseon, Inc. He blogs over at Revenews today about Launching and Relaunching Affiliate Programs

    "I thought it would be a great idea to share some of the main things you need to remember when launching or relaunching a new affiliate program... Here is a sample of my launch checklist:

    1. The Process: In order to get all the stuff done that you need to prior to launching an affiliate program, one needs to prepare the process. Develop a list and timeline for each activity that needs to be done. Everything from setting up tracking, to developing recruiting emails; from advertising to banner development, get all these activities down and assign a due date. I like to start with the end date in mind, and work each activity backwards from that."​
    That's just the tip of the iceberg. Read the rest of Jamie's excellent launch tips over at Revenews.

    Didn't Jamie do a great job???

    Anyone want to add to these steps or have questions???
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 6, 2012
  2. DreamPrints

    DreamPrints New Member

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    Nice article, Linda. Thanks for pointing it out.

    I have already made most of these steps learning by mistakes and browsing forums... This article summerizes all that really great.
     
  3. xy7max

    xy7max Affiliate affiliate

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    Hey Linda, could you speak further about your transition out of affiliate management and into your current position? Thanks in advance.
     
  4. John Guanzon

    John Guanzon New Member

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    That was a great article, I took a lot of the points into consideration. I bookmarked it actually, to possibly use as a guidline with my next venture.
     
  5. Linda Buquet

    Linda Buquet <span style="color: #daa520;font-weight: bold;">Me

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    "Hey Linda, could you speak further about your transition out of affiliate management and into your current position?"

    Sorry Max, somehow I missed your question.

    I loved the "working with affiliates" part of affiliate management, but didn't enjoy all the detail mundane parts like newsletters, reporting, managing creative and all the day to day stuff.

    Also if I was doing full management I could only handle probably about 3 programs and I like variety.

    I'm good at driving traffic, recruiting and promotion and love helping affiliates.
    So I just ended up carving my own niche. Now have the luxury of only doing the big picture promotion parts that I like and none of the day-to-day stuff since all my clients are pro-actively managed. I also can support around 15 clients instead of just 3 so in a way can spread my efforts a little wider and help more affiliates since I cover a broad range of product categories.

    My biz model is unique, the way I charge clients is unique - in fact this whole thing I do is pretty unique and no one else on the planet does what I do. In fact no one really understands what I do and it's sort of a mystery to most people how I pull it off. So I feel very lucky and blessed to have created my own unique niche.

    I never planned this out - it just evolved. Back when I started my business I didn't have the vision to believe I could carve my own niche, create my own destiny, only do the things I love doing and would do for free anyway - AND get paid well for it. I just feel so lucky!

    Did I ever end up answering your question? :p
     
  6. xy7max

    xy7max Affiliate affiliate

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    Hey Linda, thanks for taking the time to answer my question. I really appreciate.

    It seems as though you've found something you love and will continue to grow with forever. I am looking for a job/avenue/niche for myself just like that. Everything is a work in progress :)

    It is wonderful to hear someone with such a positive outlook on what they do for a living. I think that is the key to a successful and happy life. I think we all strive for that.

    Good luck with everything you're doing, and I hope to meet you at one of the trade shows so we can speak and I can have a chance to pick your brain! :)
     
  7. TJM

    TJM Affiliate affiliate

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    Linda
    This post you made was very helpful to answering my questions i asked earlier in the n00b area. Understanding a little of how you got where you got and what you liked and didn't like was very valuable. I think it would help people to see a bio on your path and growth and success -- it would be inspiring and would help give clarity to the market and decisions people make when first getting in. My sense so far is that affiliates are more the entrepreneurs and affiliate managers are more the stellar operations experts to keep it all going well (for the merchant and affiliate). Now that you've made these comments i have a sense that being an affiliate may be more to my liking. Part of my AM thinking was i have merchant friends who simply could be doing so much better if they had affiliates working on their behalf. They have great niche products, but little marketing or sales or online experience.

    Anyway, this post gave some useful nuggets.
    TJM
     
  8. Grail

    Grail New Member

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    Linda,

    Thank you very much. This is very helpful as we have just launched our affiliate program. Wish I would have came here a bit sooner.
     
  9. Linda Buquet

    Linda Buquet <span style="color: #daa520;font-weight: bold;">Me

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    Better late than never. :p Best of luck with your new program!
     
  10. cumbrowski

    cumbrowski Affiliate affiliate

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    Broken Link

    Linda, just FYI. The link is broken. I know why and it ****** me off, but that is a different story. The new working link is here
    Launching and Relaunching Affiliate Programs.

    You only need to replace the "_" with a "-" in the "file name". The same is true for all old ReveNews.com posts except for blogs that I fixed manually, including mine and the blogs of Wayne Porter, Sam Harrelson, David Lewis, Brad Waller, Mike Allen, Angel Djambazov, Adam Viener and Brian Clark.
     
  11. Linda Buquet

    Linda Buquet <span style="color: #daa520;font-weight: bold;">Me

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    Thanks so much Carsten! That was such a good article, I want people to
    be able to get to it. Didn't even know it was broken, so thanks for catching!
     
  12. Dainis

    Dainis Affiliate affiliate

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    oh boy!

    Thanks for the tips. I'm in the process of launching right now and will post in the site review section, and I'll PM you about consulting options.

    Best,
    Dainis
     
  13. freddykaboot

    freddykaboot New Member

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    Linda,

    Thanks for the advice. I once gave up a few years ago but I'm back because I know how much extra income being a real affiliate with dedication can make.

    This time instead of expecting so much, I've decided to dedicate so much and if the money comes, that's great too.

    I've really been diligent in keeping track of everything, doing a little bit at a time so as not to get burnt in front of the computer and giving myself a much longer time frame.

    Thanks for the reassurance that I'm on the right track.
     
  14. cayumi

    cayumi New Member

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    Thanks for the information

    Great information here

    Thanks for sharing

    Cayumi
     
  15. phoenix212

    phoenix212 Affiliate affiliate

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    Damn great resource! I wish I had this a year ago!
     
  16. novelco

    novelco Affiliate affiliate

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    I am going to be launching my affiliate program on Monday, so this was a very useful post. It has been months in the making now and I'm happy to see that most of the techniques discussed in Jamie's post are things I have already done. Had not planned on placing ads on the few sites that were recommended though!
     
  17. Linda Buquet

    Linda Buquet <span style="color: #daa520;font-weight: bold;">Me

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    Are you sure you want to launch Christmas Monday? I think you'll barely get any mindshare, same with next week. You'd be much better off waiting until after the 1st of the year IMHO.
     
  18. novelco

    novelco Affiliate affiliate

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    Linda - This was actually something I was strongly contemplating and going back and forth with. I just felt like by waiting, so is everyone else and I am going to be competing with several other newly launched affiliate programs. Just felt like I could get a slight head start and continue to promote it strongly through the new year by launching it on Monday.
     
  19. Linda Buquet

    Linda Buquet <span style="color: #daa520;font-weight: bold;">Me

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    That's a good point too Justin.
     
  20. performance-based

    performance-based Affiliate affiliate

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    banner development for launch

    I enjoyed the list! It mirrors my own list and added a few more steps! oh Joy!lol As far as banner development i often find it difficult when an advertiser
    thinks that they need to have very hectic and cluttered banners. I find that an almost "minimalist" banner often works better. Any one else have difficulties with advertisers ideas of how banners should be?
     

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