If you’ve been reading our blog for a while, you know that strong business relationships are what help us produce 7 figure launches and that some of these launches include hundreds of affiliate partnerships per launch.
But while business relationships aren’t easy to build they can, unfortunately, be easy to break, and we want to make sure this doesn’t happen to you. So instead of sending you out into the world to make your own mistakes, we made a list of very common mistakes we see people make in the affiliate marketing industry.
6 Certain Ways to Lose the Profitable Affiliate Relationships You’ve Worked So Hard to Build
Reach Out with Poorly Tested, Poor Value Products that Don’t Benefit Their Audience
Testing out your product is essential before you reach out to build potential affiliate business relationships. Approaching them before optimizing the offer and understanding what helps it convert means putting all the risk on your partners.
Moreover, you need to make sure that the product itself is high quality, and will actually fulfill its promises. Again, not testing it first and getting feedback from your own audience means putting all the risk on your partners’ relationships with their lists.
Reach Out with Affiliate Opportunities that Don’t Support Their Goals
If you can’t wait for winter to come, but your friend starts missing the beach when the first drop of rain falls, you know she might not be the best partner for a winter getaway to Alaska, even though you really enjoyed going with her to New York or New Orleans.
Similarly, think of your partner’s needs when you decide to pitch them an offer, or even help connect them with someone. Don’t refer a small partner to them if you know they only work with companies that have at least a million people on their list. Don’t send them a luxury fashion type of offer if their audience is budget-conscious. Don’t pitch them on how much money they can make, if what matters most to them is the impact your product will make on their customers’ lives.
Do thorough research. Study as much as you can about them. Read their newsletter. Follow them on social media. Build a relationship whenever you can. It will make it easier for you to think about what’s really in it for them if they say yes.
Don’t Clarify Their Goals and Success Metrics for Affiliate Mailings
When you don’t ask partners what they define as a successful mailing, you’re stuck in the guessing game and might end up losing opportunities to save a partnership.
Once you know what’s your partner’s best case scenario, you can set reminders for yourself to track it and reach out with help, depending on what you see. By making a proactive effort you keep that relationship healthy.
If you see she’s doing better than she hoped, you can reach out and suggest she mails for you again, and maybe even give her some bonus commission for that.
But if you see she might not reach her goal, letting it slide might cost you her future collaboration. If you know she’s not doing well with this offer, reach out to her and brainstorm ways you can help her.
You won’t always be able to save the deal, but you might be able to save the partnership if you figure out together why this deal didn’t work, and what other types of deals might be a better fit.
If you don’t ask in advance about what she defines as success, you won’t know what makes them successful and you won’t have the trigger to check in with her while there’s still a chance to help.
Don’t Honor Your Promises and Contract
Affiliate relationships are built on trust that both parties will honor their words and do what they said they would do. Therefore, your partners count on you to mail for them like you promised you would, to pay everything you promised, when you promised, to refer them the amount of quality prospective partners every month that you promised to refer them… or anything else you committed to doing.
Everyone has mishaps and unexpected challenges, so affiliates that you have a strong relationship with might be willing to give you another chance, but if you continuously fail to follow through, they’ll trust you less and less, and you’ll risk losing not only their business but that of their colleagues and friends as well.
Disappear When Things Go Wrong
There might come a day when you can’t honor a commitment you made, or you can’t help a partner get to her defined success metrics from your partnership. Launches are complex, business is complex, technology isn’t perfect, and you and your team are human. Things happen.
And when they do, what matters most is how you show up.
If you know something is happening, don’t wait for your partner to find out, or hope that she doesn’t. Alternatively, if a partner comes to you with a challenge, listen.
Be honest and transparent, and do your best to help them and, when needed, to make it up to them. The deal itself is important, but the long term relationship you’re building with this partner is important tenfold.
Take Your Partnership for Granted
Even if you’ve put a lot of time, money, sweat and laughter into a relationship, if you don’t continue nurturing it, you won’t stay at the top of their mind.
According to Forbes, Robin Dunbar, a British anthropologist, correlated “the size of primate brains and average social group size,” and concluded that humans “can maintain stable social relationships” with up to 150 people. “If we don’t continually build a relationship, there is a very good chance that we won’t stay in the top 150,” Forbes explained.
Because if we don’t continually build the relationship and won’t continuously stay on the mind with our partners, it will be easier for them to forget about us.
Source: Mindmavin via Forbes
And if they forget about us, and we reach out to remind them we exist only when we need something from them, their emotional connection to us might not be as strong, and they’ll be less likely to help us out that if we made sure to stay present in their lives and continue adding value even when we don’t need anything in return.
Play Your Cards Right, and Your Affiliate Business Relationship will Be Profitable for a Long, Long Time
Relationships and time are our most precious resources, both as human beings and as affiliate marketing professionals. Don’t waste yours by making mistakes other people have already made for you.
Instead, be the person that shows her or his partners how valuable they are, and you’ll become the partner they want to work with over and over again.