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Merchant Hall of Shame

Discussion in 'Affiliate Management and Recruitment' started by Rob_TID, Nov 2, 2006.

  1. Rob_TID

    Rob_TID Affiliate affiliate

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    I wonder if anyone has made an online merchant hall of shame whre the names of companies that are involved in deceiptful or just downright stupid practices can be posted?
     
  2. AffiliateGuild

    AffiliateGuild Affiliate affiliate

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    The only one I know of is on Ros Gardner's forum where she allows a very polite and professional discussion about bad experiences. It's very moderated to keep out flaming too.

    It's difficult to post such a list because one person might have a bad experience and everyone else is doing fine with a company. What I do is if a company has totally pushed me to the wall after a good long time of trying to get resolution in every way possible, I might blog about it.

    I've actually had that happen once and within a few days of blogging I was contacted by the company's CFO to try and make things right. I'm always open to resolution and especially when both parties are very polite and use kind words. The company I had the issues with is actually working with me now to help make the company a better place for affiliates. So, you can make a difference sometimes ... just depends on the quality of the company I guess ... and your own openness to helping to make the Industry a better place to work.

    I'd rather not say the name of the company because we're still resolving issues together and I don't want to influence others one way or the other at this time.

    While there are several companies I can think of that I feel should live out their lives in a hall of shame, I'm not going to promote doing that. I can see where these companies get very cut-throat at times and would falsify documentation to hurt the other guy. It just wouldn't be a healthy thing in my opinion. Besides, as you meet more established affiliates ... when you talk in private, you'll learn who to do business with and who not to. Look at the blogs of respected affiliate bloggers and see who they promote ... that's a big clue for you. ;)
     
  3. Rob_TID

    Rob_TID Affiliate affiliate

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    I know you are right (and very diplomatic)

    I just get a little frustrated with some affiliate managers and companies. More a post out of frustration than rational thought.

    Perhaps we can get Linda to blog about what a merchant should NOT do and then we can direct companies to that blog post?

    Linda?
     
  4. Linda Buquet

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

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    Hi Rob,

    Well in principal I'm all for outing merchants HOWEVER there is too much room for abuse, flames and law suits. If an affiliate says merchant XYZ is a dishonest jerk and didn't pay them I don't have time to investigate to see if it's true and I certainly can't afford to get sued. It could just be someone with an axe to grind. It could also be a spammer that wasn't paid for good reasons and we didn't hear the merchants side of it so no one knows the real truth.

    What I am TOTALLY fine with is affiliates posting details about bad merchant practices - like 800# leaks and stuff, for learning purposes, as long as names aren't mentioned. We can talk about why it's a bad practice then you can send the merchant here to read about it and learn from it.

    Example: I just joined a pet affiliate program and found out they have "live customer support via chat" and if the customer orders over chat we lose our commission. That would be fine.

    But no flames, no defamatory or inflammatory accusations and no names.
     
  5. AffiliateGuild

    AffiliateGuild Affiliate affiliate

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    I'll tell you Rob, I've been cheated out of more than $50k+ in affiliate income from bad merchants. Sometimes things go badly. Sometimes you just have to walk away.

    But, I will say ... cheat me once, and you've lost a powerful business relationship that will never work with you again, and frankly any one who is in assiciation with someone I know is a cheater, whether they know they are or not, I will avoid like the plague. It's a deal breaker for me.

    Hope we've cheered you up! :eek:
     
  6. Rob_TID

    Rob_TID Affiliate affiliate

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    Cheered indeed! :)

    To be honest, I think a lot of merchants don't make mistakes in a vindictive fashion (though I am sure there are some), but it is more a question of education in sound affiliate marketing practices.
     

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