So one huge and common mistake many Merchants with Affiliate programs make with Black Friday and Cyber Monday is that they always hide and keep their Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales hidden from their competitors, which also means not giving their Affiliates a heads up on what will be available and what to promote.
Yes, this protects your competitors from beating you out, but unless you are a Walmart or a Best Buy, guess what, it also makes you lose tons of ad space and gives you a huge missed opportunity. By the time Black Friday hits, Affiliates are out shopping, wanting to spend time with their families and one of the last things they want to do is add in last minute html coded deals and specials when other Merchants gave them the heads up weeks in advance. Then again, there are some Affiliates who will add you on all day long so you will still get a nice bump, etc… but trust me, your Black Friday and Cyber Monday could have been a heck of a lot better, so here are a few tips and pointers to use so that you don’t have to give away the farm with giving out your Black Friday and Cyber Monday Affiliate Deals, but you can also get a much stronger and more solid push for these days.
If you’re program is on Share a Sale, this year Share a Sale created a new feature to help make Affiliate and Merchant lives even easier for communicating Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals.
Share a Sale created the deals database where you can not only upload your Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for Affiliates to download and then upload instantly to their websites, but you can also help protect what you want and don’t want public with the Black Friday and Cyber Monday Affiliate Deals database. Sarah who works for them even actually uploaded a ton of Merchant’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for the Merchants to make our lives even easier….and you wonder why I love Share a Sale soo much. Not to mention it is dirt cheap to launch on Share a Sale and their Affiliate base is amazing.
Ok, most Marketing Departments and CEOs do not want to give away their biggest deals or secret deals, but at the same time there are always specials that companies do year after year and smaller deals that people will expect to see so why not get permission to release two or three specials that you will have on Black Friday and Cyber Monday and not only keep your Affiliates Happy because they now have a Merchant who will help them get prepared in advance and make their lives easier, but you can secure ad space that won’t exist anymore for free by being one of the first and more Affiliate friendly Merchants by helping to give them a heads up. If you are a smaller Merchant and need that extra advantage and don’t have tons of money to spend, then giving the Affiliates deals and specials to prepare ahead of time will definitely help to put you in their favor when they are picking who to promote better and who gets the better ad space.
If you know you are going to be late or sending out your Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals at the last minute or on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, then you should also think about the fact that you are going to be putting stress on your Affiliates. One way to not only make sure you can get into their sites and newsletters, but also make them a bit happier is to buy ad space from them for their Newsletters and websites. Not only will you be able to help make sure your ads will be on their sites, but the Affiliate will know when to expect you to be sending the ads over (You will need to tell them you won’t be sending until last minute so make sure you say how many words, characters, etc… pretype out the deal so they have enough space), but you will also have opened a line of communication between you and one of your Affiliates. This is definitely a great way to build and grow your relationship with your Affiliates.
Even if you cannot release what your Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals are, you can still advertise that you will be having a huge sale and buy ad space in the Affiliate’s Newsletter. You can run a teaser ad like get ready for huge savings on this product or on our entire site and check back this Friday for exclusive deals and coupons on www.Affiliate’ssite.com. This will not only help to get people interested in your products and your store, but it will also make it so the Affiliate may do a favor for you last minute since they know that is when your deals will be coming and actually add them in since their customers and readers know that the sale is coming.
Even if you cannot send your deals and specials out to your Affiliates. Apologize to them ahead of time. They understand you cannot always give out information or you may not even have that information until the last minute so one thing you can do is apologize to them for not being able to send the info sooner and also let them know when you will be sending it out so that they can be on the lookout for your information. Affiliates love honesty and love to be kept in the loop when the information is actually important. Don’t forget to keep them in the loop and let them know you haven’t forgotten about them and keep them in the loop.
There are some other things you can do, two which are amazingly effective, but if I shared them with you, well I’d be out of a job, so the last bit of advice I can give for this is to 1. Listen to what your Affiliates are asking for (Not the toolbar and adware ones, but legit ones) 2. Be upfront, opened and honest with them 3. Give them as much as you can and if you can give them a couple of specials but not everything early, they will appreciate it and be more opened to promoting you better in the future.