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Recently I signed up with an affiliate network to receive recruiting emails from companies that think I may be a good fit for their program. I’ve taken on homeschooling my daughter this year, so I don’t have as much time to work on my business. I thought it would be a nice timesaver, one that would introduce me to new companies and products.
I have to say that for the most part though, it has been a real email inbox clutterer. Most of the emails I have received have been pretty useless. They read like a form letter without any thought at all. Here is an example:
Based on your success with other similar advertisers, we think OurProgram would be a great match for yourprogram, so we would like to invite you to join their new program by clicking here:
A link to the affiliate network with program information
You can begin earning commissions right away!
OurProgram and the Affiliate Network
Here are the problems with it and my advice to fix it:
- It doesn’t even make an effort at being personal by including my name. Some of these emails do, but most do not. If you are going to send out a generic email, at least enter in the name field to help catch my attention.
- The email mentions that I am successful with similar advertisers but doesn’t say what the similarities are. Take some time to go through my websites listed on my account and ways your program fits with them.
- I’m not sure just what your program does or sells from this email. Because this program is seeking me out, I am not going to take time out of my day to figure out just what it is that you do. Add a description of your products and services, as well as what your commission, cookie length, and average sale is.
- There is no link direct to the program’s website. Having a link to the affiliate network is fine, but I also want to see what your customers will see. It will help me to figure out if your program is a good match or not. Plus it will make that research quick and easy for me.
- No contact information for the Affiliate Manager. It is very helpful if you sign the email with your name, email address and perhaps a phone number if I choose to follow up with you. It is a nice personal touch that lets me know the program is being managed by someone who cares and takes the time to work with their affiliates.
My time really is limited and these five things (and the way they can be fixed) can really mean the difference between me wanting to learn more and perhaps joining and promoting a program or not. I really hope that this helps a number of affiliate managers out there. Feel free to link to this post whenever you get one of these emails. I know I am going to start forwarding it in my replies.
What are some of the things you have seen in these type of emails? How would you improve on them? I would love to know in the comments below.
UPDATED: It has come to my attention that there is the perfect conference for Affiliate Managers looking to learn more about program management and communication with affiliates. It is called Affiliate Management Days and is a two day event hosted in beautiful San Francisco April 16-17, 2013. You can learn more and register here.
Geno Prussakov says
Shannon, great post (and 5 points)!
I must admit, I like the succinctness of this recruitment email. Beyond its conciseness, however, you’re right — it doesn’t have any of the data that affiliates are looking for when deciding whether to join an affiliate program or not. Blanket email texts should be treated by affiliate managers just as that — a skeleton on which to grow your own thing.
Yes, I like your idea of it being a skeleton that needs to be fleshed out a bit (or a lot). Thanks for your perspective.
Vinny O'Hare says
Sounds like these affiliate managers are not using the tool in a practical manner. It is a shame that many affiliate managers don’t personalize their emails and take the time to visit the affiliates site before sending these emails which do nothing but waste each others time.
I just don’t understand why they are not using the opportunity better.
Vinny O'Hare says
It is because they don’t know any better. Odds are the sales department is running the affiliate program and they think whatever they do is good enough.