The most regular means of communication between affiliate managers and the wider group of affiliates in their program is generally going to be the affiliate newsletter, otherwise known as CRM (customer relationship management) if you’re the affiliate manager.
The affiliate newsletter is commonly under-utilised when, done well, it can be one of the better means of building a community around a program.
If your an affiliate, it is important to make sure you’re signed up to the affiliate newsletter for your best performing (or most sophisticated) programs as this is going to be your quickest way of keeping up to date with whatever is new in the program and potentially give you tips and insights into what is going to perform best for you as you work with the program.
Affiliate managers should understand that the affiliate newsletter is the second most important tool in keeping an affiliate community up to date with what’s happening in the business. The first is, without doubt, shouting the affiliate a beer at the bar during an affiliate conference 😉
Affiliate managers who are looking to build a community will often find a way to get more into the newsletter than just the latest promotion. Whether it’s a featured piece about a top affiliate, the best performing product that they have or ideas surrounding the next meet up of like-minded internet geeks, you should be receiving a newsletter that helps you interact with the program and learn ways of improving the ROI of your time spent promoting their program.
If you’re not receiving tips from your most preferred or profitable affiliate program (they’re not always the same) then you should be talking to your affiliate manager to start getting them more involved with building your community and potentially even offering to help.
Who knows, you may get some good contacts out of helping out.
As much as affiliates can feel like they’re out on their own in the world and don’t want to pass on any secrets of their performance, there are many situations where getting involved and helping the community as a whole will help lift the affiliate program you’re working with thereby improving your bottom line and hopefully enhancing your affiliate knowledge.