The world of managing affiliates is highly complex. While the entire business is run on mathematical metrics, the entire business is driven by relationship skills. We live in a market where it is very easy to hide behind computers and forget that there is a real person reading the email we are about to send. Because of this Affiliate Marketing attracts a certain type of person. A type that likes to eliminate complexities, automate processes and make deals quickly based on trust that the person on the other end of the communication is being 100% honest. This is where one of our biggest downfalls is as well. The business is quick and easy – but all too often fraudulent affiliates take advantage of our trusting nature. This is why doing your homework upfront will not only eliminate much of the hassle of solving problems down the road but also make for longer lasting campaigns. Here is most of www.cpanation.com’s preliminary process for approving an affiliate into our network (we have to leave out a few so that potential fraudsters can’t beat the system – if you really want them send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will gladly give them if you pass the test.) I suggest you incorporate this process into your affiliate approval process:
Before even getting on the phone with the applicant: Pass(Y/N) Comments/Notes:
- Do IP addresses match?
- How is there overall website (everything working and updated?)
- Affiliate network or Affiliate Marketer?
- Contact info real? (check google and social networks.)
- Are there legit comments and site updates?
- Is address legitimate (no po box, zip real and match state, etc.)
- Can you find them via google?
- Check www.fraudaffilaite.com to make sure they have not been blacklisted.
If they pass the test then we contact – if not we deny on the spot.
- Call the phone number they provide us. Must have a working number, voicemail and must be able to give a second number that works.
- How did they find us? Get a real answer – does the answer match their application . Trade show- which one? Search engine – google, yahoo, keywords, forum? Person – who?
- Which networks do they currently work with? Why are they shopping for other networks?
- Verify their mailing address with application, website, 3rd party source.
- How will they be promoting our offers?
- POP/Banner – Ask them to email us a list of all websites they promote banner on. Ask them how they drive traffic to the banner site. Get screenshots.
- Email – How many email addresses on their list? What domains are you inboxing? What software do they use? What country are they sending mail from? How do you get your data? Single or double opt in?
- Which verticals work best for them? I.E. Education, financial, beauty, biz opp., lead gen? Why? Get specific impressions, clicks, offers, payouts and client conversion rates if lead or continuity offer. To the metrics match our internal conversion projections worksheet.
- Search (PPC)/Contextual - Ask them which search engines they use. Get a live sample of the search term. Which search engines do they utilize? How do they send traffic: directly to offers or an intermediary page?
- Social (which sites)?
- What offers do they currently run and have success with? Get links, volume and what they are getting paid. (all this info will help you find offers that are relevant for them.)
- Get W9 & Make sure their tax ID number matches the one they provided. Do not release payment until this is received.
- If something seems sneaky – do not approve them.
- Have a manager review and approve.