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Actionable Steps to Boost Your Affiliate Program in 2015

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This presentation is from Affiliate Summit West 2015 (January 18-20, 2015 in Las Vegas, NV). Session description: Become 10X more efficient with APIs & automation, dig deep into network tools & data in ways you never knew, capture low hanging fruit, streamline recruiting & more pro tips you can’t afford to miss.

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Actionable Steps to Boost Your Affiliate Program in 2015

  1. 1. *
  2. 2. * Jennifer Crego, Affiliate Manager Greg Hoffman Consulting @jennifercrego
  3. 3. * It’s easy to get busy and forget about simple affiliate program management activities. Make sure you’re devoting some time to these activities. You can make it easier by scheduling reminders.
  4. 4. * • Attractive layout • Include program highlights • Program manager with contact information or link to your outsourced program manager • Link to the program application • Remember to review every 12 weeks & update it when anything changes
  5. 5. * • Program highlights • Complete terms of agreement • Contact information • Review every 12 weeks to make sure it looks good and nothing has changed
  6. 6. * • A good acceptance email will help new affiliates get started right away • Program highlights • Basic program terms • Top performing ads • Your name and contact information, not the “team” • Consider including an incentive to help new affiliates get up and running faster • Review every 8 weeks so that you can update ads or include seasonal information
  7. 7. * • Review banners regularly and replace ads that aren’t performing well • Keep in touch with top performers • Review coupon landing pages • If not utilizing auto-deposits, check deposits daily, especially on Fridays • Approve & decline applications daily; don’t auto approve
  8. 8. * • Ongoing education • Attend network conferences • Get to know other program managers
  9. 9. * • Make sure Terms of Agreement are clear • Establish PPC rules and monitor/enforce daily • Brandverity is a great tool for monitoring coupon codes, keywords and brand names
  10. 10. * Don’t worry about overlooking basic tasks! Get a 2015 calendar with pre-set reminders for tasks that are repeated every 6-12 weeks. Most months include 2-3 tasks, plus Friday reminders for checking funds.
  11. 11. * • In Google Calendar, click the right arrow next to “Other calendars” • Select “Add a friend’s calendar” • Enter this email: ob41h7k9f334g1je590e07p49c@grou • Or email me at
  12. 12. * Joe Sousa, Affiliate Coordinator Fantatics, Inc. @drcool73
  13. 13. * Tools – Network based features you can use to effectively and efficiently run your affiliate programs. Not referring necessarily to API based tools. That is for another session. Network based tools allow you to: • Accurately pay your affiliates • Pay your affiliates based on their value • Reward quality affiliates • Reward incrementality • Reward specific behavior • Effectively deliver creatives/content to your affiliates
  14. 14. * • Run your program on a platform that has the tools you and your affiliates need. • Could be different for different merchants • In my opinion Shareasale and Avantlink provide the best set of tools.
  15. 15. * • Shareasale tools: • Advanced Commission Rules – Clickstream rules • Pay affiliates based on where they fall in the click stream • Pay multiple affiliates in the clickstream • Lower or eliminate payouts on specific clickstream behavior • Advanced Commission Rules – Transaction rules • Pay based on SKU • Pay based on coupon code behavior • Pay based on order total • Pay based on new customer • Advanced Commission Rules – Other behavior • Set bonuses for new affiliates • Pay based on recruiting source • Pay based on creative used
  16. 16. * • Avantlink Tools – Avantmetrics • Shared attribution • De-duplication of internal marketing channels • De-duplication of multi-network sales • Tag Based Rules • Other Networks - ???
  17. 17. * • Take advantage of the tools – They are there to be used • Most of them require some advanced pixel parameters • Test them on a small scale before rolling them out program- wide • Talk to your network reps – One small mistake can be very costly • Talk to other merchants/affiliate managers to see how they are using the tools • Combine your internal analytics with these tools to really nail down the value of the affiliate channel
  18. 18. * *Tools for affiliates – Become an expert in these *Be able to point your affiliates to the tool they should use for what they are trying to do *Screenshares are your friend – Learn how to use them ( *Write some tutorials on some of the tools available for affiliates
  19. 19. * Karen Gracia, CEO/Partner GTO Management @karengarcia
  20. 20. * What is an API? •API stands for Application Programming Interface and it specifies the way a program can interact with an application. •Used properly, APIs streamline your day- to-day business activities, freeing you to do more important things. •Sounds mysterious and scary, but really isn’t.
  21. 21. * • Most networks provide API access for both merchants and affiliates • Use of APIs requires a set of credentials usually involving an IP address, API key, and a token • APIs can be used to create in-house tools that access and interact with data on the network in real time • They can also be used to plot data from multiple networks into a single dashboard • All data is not created equal: often networks provide additional data in APIs that is unavailable in their interface • You -will- need to know how to code in order to use APIs, however all is not lost!
  22. 22. * • Reporting • Applications and Affiliate Management • Transactions and Reconciliation • Consumer Promotions • Data Retention • Affiliate API
  23. 23. * • Depending on the network, the KPIs you need to track might be on several different reports or worse, they could be something you manually have to count. • Generate easy pulls of data by date • Aggregate data by KPI. Want to calculate your activation rate without counting lines for the week? For the month? For a specific segment of your program? • Set up data pulls for comparison to previous periods (WOW, MOM, YOY) • Pull reports to push into other internal services, such as internal attribution reporting or to send a monthly report of revenues by state to the finance department.
  24. 24. * • Approve or decline affiliates • Search through your affiliates by specific parameters. For example, in CJ you can search for all joined publishers who have listed their promotional method as email. • Keep notes on specific affiliates outside of the network. Especially handy when the network does not provide a space for notes.
  25. 25. * Processing voids, returns, and cancellations manually can be a real hassle at best and can be a disaster at worst. Miss the cut off and you're stuck paying commission on orders you didn't make any money on yourself. Also, processing all your reconciliation at once can wreak havoc on your EPC and return rates in the network, making your program appear unpalatable to potential affiliates. • Process real-time voids or edits to transactions as they occur • Set up recurring commissions like subscriptions • Easily flag transactions for review based upon criteria you set
  26. 26. * Often promotions come to managers last minute and, especially during high volume periods, they can frequently change with very little notice. APIs can shorten your launch time from hours to just minutes or even seconds. • Push multiple deals into a deal feed simultaneously • Schedule deals to push automatically • Push deal edits into an existing deal. Especially useful when products go out of stock or when promotion end dates are extended and you have multiple deals that need to be edited quickly.
  27. 27. * • Pull and save data from the network to your own servers • Some networks only provide data for a certain time period or have date restrictions on reports • Storing historical data can be useful if you end a relationship with a network • Networks often restrict the number of API calls per month. Saving data once or twice a day to your own servers and then running PHP code against this saved data will save you network calls.
  28. 28. * Many similar reports are available for affiliates via network APIs as well. Familiarize yourself with what is available so you can assist affiliates. • Transaction and Commission Reports • Find merchants with products based on keywords • Acquire all new merchant banners for a specific merchant
  29. 29. * • Choose an API task • What is it for? • What does it need to do? • Locate the API calls needed • Determine any data that needs to be stored • Decide on output • Code • Network sample code • Test • Enjoy your free time
  30. 30. * Kush Abdulloev, Affiliate Program Manager VMInnovations @khushbaht
  31. 31. * • Purpose of your affiliate program: • why does it exist? • Set Goals Based on Your Purpose • Measuring success (KPIs) source flickr: BMclvr
  32. 32. * • Affiliates Recruited • Total affiliates vs active affiliates • Clicks/visitors • Orders & AOV • Conversion Rate & Outliers • Revenue & Profit • New vs Existing Customers • Commission Trends
  33. 33. * *Historical Trends: M/M, Q/Q, Y/Y
  34. 34. * • Google • Forums and Review Sites • Social Media • Conferences: ASW, SAS-TT • For Attendees Only: shhh…
  35. 35. * *Download the detailed version here: