Promoting an Affiliate Scheme

February 8, 2010 Steve

David wrote to the Affiliate Doctors to ask some questions about how he could go about advertising and running an affiliate scheme as a service provider.  At the time it was a little unclear as to what the offering was exactly, but the gist of it was that he had set up a site to provide a resource focusing on ‘self web development using WordPress’.  However, as a service, they planned to price it at a subscription fee of £499 for 2 years (discounted to £149 with a promo code), and for each subscriber they were planning to throw in free hosting and a domain name …  I’m sure many of you will have your own thoughts on that one …

With that said, they planned to promote the service via the affiliate channel and wanted to pick the docs brains as to where the best place would be to advertise the scheme.  Commission was set at £30 for each sale, paid directly into a PayPal account, with monthly affiliate prizes of £3,000 to the affiliate generating the most sales.

Unfortunately, when when the docs came to review the site, it was down, and only one doc got review the live site; it hasn’t appeared since.  Although the site is no longer, I thought it would still be of benefit to publish the docs reviews on how they would go about promoting a new affiliate scheme.

Here’s what the docs had to say:


Hi David.

The least time intensive method to get affiliates is to join a network.  Going the in-house route can work well too, but you’ll need plenty of time to devote to recruiting the affiliates and keeping them paid and happy.  The quickest way to find relevant affiliates is just to head to Google and try some searches for terms you’d like to appear on and see where you can find affiliate sites and then contact them.  For instance I’d try stuff like ‘hosting reviews’, ‘cheap wordpress hosting’ etc..  As things stand though, I think you may struggle to find productive affiliates, the market for hosting is very tough and there are a lot of good affiliate programs for hosting out there, I’m not sure your offering is particularly competitive.


Hi David.

Thanks for submitting your enquiry to the Doctors, and I hope the following will help you understand what you need to do to promote your affiliate campaign.

If you want to promote your affiliate campaign on your own platform, then I would suggest that you spend time targeting relevant people to promote your campaign, and contact people directly to inform them of your campaign.

You could also use some of the affiliate marketing forums to communicate information about your campaign, but please be careful when submitting things onto forums about your campaign and ensure that you submit them in the relevant place – don’t spam.

You could also consider using an affiliate network to track the sales and have the benefit of the reach that an affiliate network will have to relevant affiliates already.  You would need to pay for this, but as a rule of thumb you would pay a set-up fee, a monthly fee and an override on the commission you pay to affiliates, so you are best to contact more than one affiliate network about your campaign offering.

I would also edge on the side of caution when trying to use affiliate marketing for Business to Business propositions as there are a limited number of affiliates that are strong in this space.  I would also make sure that you ask the network about that before working with them, and maybe consider asking a few affiliates on forums about their experience with these networks for your products.

I hope this is useful, if you have any questions please feel free to contact us.


Hi David.

As I can’t see the website to read up on the services you’re offering I won’t be able to give you any feedback, so I will address the how to promote it via affiliates part of your question.  The best places to advertise affiliate opportunities is the A4U Forum, affiliate blogs, your own Twitter account and by contacting affiliates directly.

A4U Forum

You’re free to make a post but can speak to Matt’s team with regards to placement of an onsite advert and the Affiliate Solus email opportunities.

Affiliate Blogs

These are a fantastic place to advertise affiliate opportunities as they tend to have the more engaged affiliates reading, the ones that want to learn more and stay up to date with what affiliates in the know have to say.  Plus I dare say if you’re an onsite advertiser, you could probably approach them with your press release or even a free demo account and get a free write up, but be warned, you can’t pay affiliates to write good things about you, so you will need to accept that if they review your service, they will say what they like as well as what they don’t like about it.

Twitter, is a great marketing tool that’s still being overlooked.  Granted, there are a lot more people on Twitter these days, but you will be surprised how it’s brushed off by people who are not feeling the Twitter love.  Get an account, get following the Twitter lists of the affiliates in the UK, start interacting and most of all, post information about what you do and why affiliates should check it out etc..

Contacting Affiliates Directly

This is hard work with a small percentage success rate of affiliates actually replying to emails out of the blue.  First, I would take a look at the types of affiliates you’re after, then make a list and contact them and use whatever means you can, be it email, phone, letter, Twitter etc., but please don’t spam them all.  By this I mean really look in to each one and don’t just grab the first email you can find and send a generic ‘send to all’ message; that’s got very little chance of working.

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