Over the years I’ve joined and belonged to various affiliate networks and I’ve made some additional income as a result however I’ve also watched many affiliate networks close down, and watched websites outgrow their existing affiliate networks which generally means it’s time to move to an improved affiliate network. The idea however can seem daunting, the thing is that it’s really not any harder than when you first started your affiliate program, you just have to remember to plan accordingly and keep in contact with any affiliates you have so that the transition goes smoothly. I’ve put together eight steps which should help.
Do Your Due Diligence on Your New Affiliate Network
Study the network thoroughly before deciding to switch. You obviously aren’t happy with the one you have now or you would not be thinking of switching. Take the time to ensure your next choice is a long-term choice that will work for your needs. Make a list of functions you need, along with your budget, and put your answers into a spreadsheet so that you can eventuate better.
Migrating to a new affiliate network from another can be a busy and complicated procedure. You might consider getting help. If you don’t have an affiliate manager, hiring one who is experienced using the new platform would be a good choice to make at this juncture.
Communicate in Advance with Affiliates
It’s important that you open the lines of communication with your affiliates so that they will be ready to move with you to the new platform with the time comes. If you make it an exciting transition that promises more tools for your affiliates, they’ll be excited. But don’t spring it on them. Give them time to prepare.
Get Rid of Dead Weight
You probably have affiliates who don’t produce, so this is a great time to only move over people who have made sales in a specific period of time. You can even run a contest in advance of the move to help create more excitement. Don’t forget to look at holidays if you have a product that sells more during holidays. You might have a super affiliate who only promotes your product then and it would be terrible to lose them.
Know Your Top Producers
Get to know the affiliate network masters in your network who are your top producers and make a special effort to reach out to them about the switch. You may even want to seek their feedback prior to choosing a new affiliate network to help you make a good decision. Some top affiliates have systems they refuse to work with. You don’t want to make that mistake.
Create New Marketing Collateral
You have to switch anyway, so it’s a great time to make, or have made, fresh new creatives. It’ll excite your affiliates and revitalize your brand. They’ll be excited to see new graphics, apps, landing pages and tools that will help them sell even more and make more money. Plus, it’ll give you something to email them about as you send reminders about the migration.
Tell Your Customers
While a new affiliate program may not directly affect your customers, it could if you usually allow them to sign into an account (that will now be different) to download the items they’ve purchased repeatedly. If that’s the case, keep them informed just like you will your affiliates.
Even after the transition, be sure to talk to your affiliates on the old platform for a while, making sure that all the people you wanted to move over know. You’ll need to send them frequent reminders to stop old creatives, ads, and promotions and to not forget to get enrolled in the new program.
Remember if you are like me and affiliate networks have only ever been a secondary (if that even) source of income, then remember to keep your main focus on your main business, I have actually watched business owners lose their primary business because of a lack of focus on it.
Moving to a new affiliate network can be a great way to increase sales, have access to new and improved features, and give more to your affiliates so that they can market your products and/or services more easily. Don’t shy away from doing it just because you have to go through a trying process.