Do you remember how you felt on your first day at a new school? That moment of fear as you were lost among a crowd of new faces? You didn’t know where the library is or the cafeteria and you felt just a little unsure about how everything is supposed to work.
That’s the same feeling your affiliate will have when they first join your program. Excited but also unsure of exactly what’s expected of them.
And just like you may have had a kind teacher or a new friend who showed you the ropes, you’ll need to create a strong onboarding process so that your affiliates will have the kind of support and guidance they’ll need to represent your brand and sell your products.
But what makes for a successful onboarding process with your affiliate partners? Let’s take a look at what you should be doing for your affiliates.
Personalize Your Onboarding
One size fits all doesn’t work for shoes or your affiliate onboarding process.
As you build your network, you’ll likely be dealing with dozens of different types of affiliates, each of which will have their own strengths and weaknesses. Recognize this and be prepared to provide the right support depending on the needs of an individual affiliate.
If someone is entirely new to the game, be prepared to give them a quick affiliate 101 crash course so they can catch up. On the other hand, if you’re working with an experienced affiliate, make sure they know about the specifics of selling in your vertical. Either way, communicate with them from the beginning to find out where their pain points are and what kind of support they need.
Educating them on your brand and what you hope to achieve from this partnership will help pave the way for a successful business relationship for everyone. After all, isn’t it the worst feeling to not quite know what you’re supposed to be doing in a role?
Make your marketing materials stand out.
We’ve said it before, but being successful in the affiliate space is about so much more than convincing someone else to put a link on their website.
If you want your campaign to thrive, you need to give your affiliates the support, data and especially the marketing materials that they’ll need to represent your brand to their audience.
Before you launch your program, build out a package of marketing content that your affiliates can deploy in support of your brand. This should include things like high-quality photos, videos and banner ads. Not only are these important to customers, but Google gives better rankings to reviews that feature well-produced and original visual content.
Automating Should be Automatic
As you build your network, you could easily find yourself handling hundreds of different affiliates all at once, each one of which will need to receive some form of welcome email, marketing content packages and other support when they sign up.
Rather than trying to manually manage the task yourself, set an automated trigger so that once you accept someone into your program, they automatically receive all of their onboarding materials immediately.
If they have to wait more than a day or two to receive them, they could get impatient and lose interest in your brand. You also don’t want to risk that you’ll forget someone while you’re managing an initial influx of affiliates.
The start of new partnerships can be rocky, but the reward is more than worth the risk. Every great partnership starts somewhere, so why don’t you help make sure your latest partnership starts on the right footing.