FEED Approach to Capturing Affiliate Attention – By Geno Prussakov

by Jenae Reid on August 17, 2016

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feedfront-35-cover-188x240There is no deficit of affiliate programs out there. Affiliates are being constantly bombarded by thousands of offers to promote and programs to join. Consequently, just as it was with consumers gradually going “banner-blind” so are present-day affiliates quickly developing what I call “offer blindness.” As a result, the farther we go, the harder it is for many brands to make their affiliate programs really stand out.

Over the many years of managing affiliate programs, I have seen some engagement techniques come and go, while others stick around. The ones that stood the test of time can be clustered into four broad groups – each serving a concrete purpose. For better memorization let’s call this a FEED approach, whereby every capital letter of the name will stand for an adjective that you want to characterize your affiliate program.

Findable

When asked about how they typically find new affiliate programs to join, among the top three things respondents to Affiliate Summit’s AffStat 2015 survey mentioned “affiliate program searches on search engines” (21.92%) and “affiliate network or CPA network website” (18.49%). Whether it is search engine optimization of your program support website, utilizing paid search to bid on relevant key phrases, or optimizing search keywords for your program on your affiliate network, aim to become easily findable.

Equipping

Check out what “the web’s most popular and successful affiliate program” (as Amazon itself calls its own) is doing. From widgets and search boxes to aStore which helps affiliates create online stores “without the need for programming skills” and to APIs to empower mobile app and game developers, they are actively equipping their affiliates with a wide arsenal of tools to facilitate promotion. You may also want to share with affiliates your lists of bestsellers, how-to content (warning them of duplicate content risks, of course), and testimonials of customers who don’t mind you using them for marketing.

Encouraging

Hersey and Blanchard’s situational theory suggests that there is no one optimal leadership style, but leaders must adjust their approaches to the needs and contingencies at hand. Affiliates come in all sorts of types and sizes, but regardless of their level of savviness everyone appreciates motivation. From hands-on advice to performance-based incentives, aim to facilitate performance via encouragement.

Different

The legend of U.S. advertising industry, William Bernbach, was known for saying that “in advertising not to be different is virtually suicidal.” Look at your affiliate program through the same prism, and stop copying what others are doing. Innovate, be different, and only then you will truly stand out.

So, there you have it; to stand out from the myriad of other programs and offers, you want your affiliate program to FEED – be Findable, Equipping, Encouraging, and Different.

Prussakov runs AM Navigator affiliate management agency, chairs Affiliate Management Days, speaks, writes, blogs, consults.

This article appeared in issue 35 of FeedFront Magazine, which was published in July 2016. https://issuu.com/affiliatesummit/docs/feedfront-35

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